The first television ads for Windows 8 leaked online this week, and they show Microsoft embracing the post-PC era that Apple has created.
The commercials for Windows 8 were uploaded to YouTube and spotted by an Israeli website. The four spots are all very simple, showing Windows 8 in action as the user does a number of different activities. All of them on a tablet, with no desktop anywhere to be seen. Which has resulted in some hand-wringing from Microsoft advocates.
Any doubts that the commercials were legitimate rather than amateur mock-ups were swiftly killed by Microsoft making a copyright claim and getting the videos yanked from YouTube. The original uploads are therefore no longer viewable but a quick search for “Windows 8 Commercial” will throw up some interesting results.
Some are suggesting that these commercials add further weight to the accusation that Microsoft is dumping the desktop in favor of a mobile future. But I don’t think that’s true. The fact is Windows 8 works on both desktops environments and mobile devices. Which has itself resulted in criticism from naysayers who believe Microsoft is trying to please everyone and will fail to please anyone.
Perhaps two different versions of Windows 8, one optimized for desktops and another optimized for mobile would have been better. But it’s not going to happen. Windows 8 is what it is, which is Microsoft offering an operating system that has one eye on the past and one eye on the future. In essence, the company is entering the post-PC era without killing the golden goose as it does so.
No one knows whether Windows 8 is going to succeed or not at this moment in time. It could be a huge hit that secures Microsoft’s future for generations or an abomination rejected by all sides. But whatever happens Microsoft is sticking around, and Windows 9 will be forged over the next two years with all the lessons from Windows 8 taken on board. So, don’t panic, everything is going to be OK.